For Unemployment Insurance purposes, a school employee is an individual who works or provides services for a public or private nonprofit educational institution. Unless otherwise stated, a school employee can also be school supportive staff which provides services to, or on behalf of, an educational institution.
School employee claims have distinctive eligibility requirements. For example, a school employee may not be eligible to receive benefits if all the following occur:
- A claim is filed during a recess period.
- Only school wages are in the base period of the claim.
- There is an offer to return to work for a school employer when the recess period ends.
What is a recess period?
A recess period is the period of time between terms, or within terms when classes are not usually scheduled. Examples of recess periods include summer vacation, and holiday recesses such as Winter or Spring break.
What is reasonable assurance?
Reasonable assurance is a written, verbal, or implied agreement that the school employee will perform services for an educational institution during the next academic year, term, or remainder of a term.
Terms used with School Employees:
Professional school employee: A school employee who performs work in an instructional, research, or principal administrative capacity (such as a teachers, principal, registrar, etc.).
Nonprofessional school employee: All other school employees (such as custodians, cafeteria workers, teacher's aides, etc.).
Frequently Asked Questions
I am not eligible for benefits because I have an offer to return to work in school employment when the recess period ends. Is a school employee ever eligible during a recess period?
Yes, if the following conditions are met:
- You have enough non-school wages in the base period to establish a valid claim.
- You have made yourself available to work for your school employer or another school employer and that school employer has indicated that it may call you to work during the recess period.
I am not eligible for benefits because I have an offer from a school employer to return to work in school employment when the recess period ends. If my school employer notifies me during the recess period that I no longer have a job when the next term begins, am I eligible to receive benefits during the remainder of the recess period?
Yes, provided you meet all eligibility requirements. When you notify the Division of Unemployment Insurance that you no longer have a job, we will verify with the school employer that the offer of employment was withdrawn.
At the end of the school term, my school employer gave me a return to work date for the next school year. Before the term began, I was laid off because my position was eliminated. Am I eligible for retroactive benefits?
Yes, if you are a non-professional school employee, or school supportive employee, and meet all the following conditions:
- Were laid off by the school employer.
- Were not previously disqualified for benefits (other than reasonable assurance to return to work).
- Certified for benefits during the recess period.
- Met all eligibility requirements during the recess period.
If a school employer offers a substitute teacher work in the next school year or term as a substitute teacher but does not give a definite date to return to work, is the substitute teacher eligible for benefits during the recess period?
Generally, no; the school employer is not required to give substitute teachers a definite return to work date to establish that there is reasonable assurance to return to work.
If an individual has worked as a substitute teacher and the school employer offers substitute work during the next school year or term under the same general conditions and the individual accepts the offer, there is reasonable assurance the individual will return to work.
My last day of work before I filed a claim for benefits was at my part-time job for a non-school employer. In addition to the part-time job, I work for a school employer. A school employer has offered me work when the recess period ends. Am I eligible for benefits during the recess period?
You are not eligible to receive benefits based on your school wages during the recess period.
If there are enough non-school wages to establish a valid claim, you may be eligible for benefits based on these wages, provided you meet all other eligibility requirements.
If an offer of work in the upcoming school year depends on enrollment or funding, am I eligible for unemployment benefits?
If an offer of work in the next school year is based on enrollment or funding and you have returned to work in past school years under these conditions, you may not be eligible for benefits during the summer recess. A claims examiner will review the facts of your specific employment to determine eligibility for benefits.